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War Graves and War Death Commemorations, Upper Largo, Fife

The kirkyard in Upper Largo (Largo and Newburn Parish Church, see previous post,) has two War Graves and two war commemorations.

To left. In memory of John Patrick Oliphant Russell, Captain, Royal Artillery, died of wounds in Italy, 7/9/1944. Buried at Gradara, Italy:-

War Death Commemoration Upper Largo Kirkyard 1>

Ralph Frederick Baxter, 2nd Lieutenant, Royal Sussex Regiment, killed in action, France, 25/9/1915, aged 18 and John Edward Baxter, 2nd Lieutenant, Scots Guards, killed in action in Italy, 16/10/1944, aged 19:-

War Deaths Commemoration Upper Largo Kirkyard

Serjeant T Simpson, Pioneer Coprs, formerly Royal Artillery, 10/8/1946, aged 46:-

War Grave, Upper Largo Kirkyard

Lower Inscription. In loving memory of Thomas Simpson, died 10th August, 1946:-

Lower Inscription War Grave Upper Largo Kirkyard

Lieutenant W A Freeborn, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, HMS Victory, 31/7/1944:-

Upper Largo Kirkyard War Grave

We took a diffeent way home from normal and had this unusual view of East and West Lomond, Fife’s highest hills from the Star (Star of Markinch) road:-

Two Lomonds in Fife

History Bookshelf Travelling for Insane times

Another entry for Judith, Reader in the Wilderness‘s meme.

This bookcase is in our living room. Top shelf is Miltary History with my extensive collection of Pan’s “British Battles” series and more. The second shelf contains more Military History, books by Primo Levi plus some novels, the third is a miscellany, some omnibus editions, hard back Hilary Mantel books plus at the extreme right books on International Exhibitions:-

History Books (and some more)

The books below are in a display cabinet. These are mostly about World Wars 1 and 2 but also there is Thomas Pakenham’s The Boer War:-

History Books

Same display cabinet. Churchill’s History of the English Speaking Peoples, Conan Doyle’s The British Campaign in Flanders and Son of the Morning Star.

More History Books

Memorial Benches, Seaham, County Durham

Clustered round Seaham’s War Memorial on Terrace Green are three benches commemorating those who served in the World Wars:-

War Memorial Bench, Seaham

Seaham, War Memorial Bench

Second World War Memorial Bench, Seaham

Close by the War Memorial is this box for the laying of crosses and poppies in remembrance:-

Box for Crosses and Poppies,Seaham

Seaham was once a mining village. A fourth bench rerpresents scenes from mining life. It has struck me that this may be in memory of the Bevin Boys, men conscripted during World War 2, not into the armed forces but to mine coal. Some of these also died during their service but they are not usually commemorated on war memorials. To my mind they ought to be.

mining Memorial Bench, Seaham

Seaham War Memorial

Seaham’s War Memorial is also on Terrace Green, near the statue of Tommy.

It’s a Celtic Cross with the column inscribed, “In grateful memory of our fellow townsmen who fell in the Great War and the World War,” and on the plinth, “for past, present and future conflicts.”

Seaham War Memorial From town

From seaward:-

Seaham War Memorial From Seaward

Inscription on the War Memorial’s base. To, “The immortal dead.”

Seaham War Memorial

Underneath the “for past” inscription, “1914-1918” (or “1914-1919”) – the wreath obscured the last number:-

Seaham War Memorial, Great War

Second World War:-

Seaham War Memorial, World War 2

War Memorial, Burnopfield, County Durham

Burnopfield is a village in County Durham, Northeast England. We passed through it on a trip to see Gibside last year and happened on its War Memorial by the side of the road. A granite obelisk, on first sight the memorial seems to be for the Great War only but there are World War 2 names on it:-

War Memorial Burnopfield

Dedications. “In thankful recognition of the men who gave their services and in grateful memory of those who gave their lives in THE GREAT WAR. Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends. Erected by the people of Burnopfield and District.”:-

Dedications, Burnopfield War Memorial

War Memorial, Burnopfield

Burnopfield War Memorial

Whitburn War Memorial

Whitburn is a small village just to the north of Sunderland in Tyne and Wear, England. The War Memorial – for Marsden District – is a granite obelisk.

Whitburn War Memorial

Great War Dedication. The names below – obscured by wreaths – will be for World War 2:-

Whitburn War Memorial Great War Dedication

Memorial from east:-

War Memorial, Whitburn from East

Reverse of Memorial:-

Reverse, Whitburn War Memorial

Marsden District Dedication:-

War Memorial, Whitburn, Marsden District Dedicationn

Memorial from west:-

Whitburn War Memorial From West

Tynemouth War Memorial

Tynemouth, as its name suggests, lies at the mouth of the River Tyne in Tyne and Wear, Northeast England, on the river’s northern bank.

Its War Memorial is situated in a small park-like area between Huntingdon Place and Front Street, Tynemouth’s War memorial has an unusual construction with four curved columns built of granite. The facing column has a downward pointing sword piercing a wreath with, below, the inscription, “To the glory of god and in memory of our fallen 1914 -1918 1939 – 1945.”

Tynemouth War Memorial

West aspect. I assume the upper names are for the Great War and the lower for World War 2:-

War Memorial, Tynemouth, West Aspect

North aspect:-

Tynemouth War Memorial, North Aspect

East aspect:-

East Aspect, Tynemouth War Memorial

Vera

So, Vera Lynn has died.

I suppose it’s too much to hope that that will mean the Second World War is finally over and will no longer be invoked by those trying to make some spurious point about contempoorary life. It was 75 years ago after all.

Oh, well.

A flavour of this sentiment colours this Pink Floyd Track from The Final Cut.

Pink Floyd: Vera

Perhaps not, then.

Lynn is repeatedly referred to as the Forces’ Sweetheart but I have it on good authority that isn’t quite true – at least for the rank and file. When she was on tour giving concerts she spent most of her time with officers. As a result, more popular among the ordinary soldier was the much lesser heralded Anne Shelton.

Still, print the legend, eh?

But at least Lynn didn’t forget the Fourteenth Army and actually visited Burma.

Most people – not least the BBC – no doubt opted for We’ll Meet Again to mark her passing. This one’s slightly less sentimental.

Vera Lynn: A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square

Vera Margaret Lynch (Vera Lynn;) 20/3/1917 – 18/6/2020. So it goes.

ПОБЕДА

Victory!

Today is Victory Day. In Russia the end of the Second World War in Europe (what Russians call the Great Patriotic War) is celebrated on May 9th, not the May 8th VE Day we know. The Soviet Union, as it then was, was the country that both suffered the most in that war (26.6 million dead) and also did the most to defeat Nazi Germany on the ground.

I’ve seen it suggested that the German surrender to the Allies in the West came late in the evening so that it was one day later in Russia. However that surrender to Eisenhower understandably somewhat miffed the Soviet Union which wanted a surrender of its own, which duly happened the day after, to Marshal Zhukov in Berlin. So May 9th is Victory Day, ДЕНЬ ПОБЕДЫ (DEN’ POBEDY.)

It is celebrated every year but there were special plans for this year’s 75th anniversary. As elsewhere, coronavirus put a hold on those.

Just off Nevsky Prospekt, St Petersburg, last year, we found this memorial garden:-

Victory Day Memorial Garden, St Petersburg

Beyond the tulips in front of the protruding wing of the building the Russian word for VICTORY was picked out in hedging beside a red star. ПОБЕДА:-

Victory Day Memorial Garden, St Petersburg

Beyond the gates and off to the right was this modern building which was displaying Victory Day banners. My reading of Cyrillic is much too insufficient to decipher what sort of exhibition was taking place inside:-

Modern Building, St Petersburg

Leningrad Hero City Obelisk, St Petersburg

In the centre of Vosstaniya Square, St Petersburg, is the Leningrad Hero City Obelisk erected in 1985 to commemorate the fortieth Anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over German forces in the Great Patriotic War (World War 2.)

Leningrad Hero City Obelisk, St Petersburg

WW2 Monument, St Petersburg, Russia

WW2 Monument, St Petersburg, Russia

Another connection of St Petersburg to the Great Patriotic War is the old trams which still ply the city’s streets along with more modern counterparts. Despite their rattling and rolling the city’s inhabitants venerate the old models as they kept going all through the siege of the city.

Old Tram, St Petersburg

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